North East Wildlife

Wildlife across the North East

Thanks for stopping by Common By Nature!

Focused on botany and insects, this blog brings together my observations of wildlife across the North East.

As a naturalist, my main interest is biological recording. This means that much of what you’ll see here will focus on finding and identifying wildlife, of all kinds.

This blog has changed a lot since 2011 but from plants to ladybirds, I hope you find something here to interest you!

Recent blog posts on North East wildlife

Observations on nature in Newcastle, Northumberland and beyond.

NBN Award for Wildlife Recording

This week, I was both suprised and delighted to recieve the NBN Newcomer Award for Wildlife Recording.

Getting Started with Aphid Identification

Having never tried my hand at aphid identification, this Summer proved quite a steep learning curve with many interesting species seen.

Plant of the Week: Blue Fleabane

Entry number four in our Plant of the Week series follows the unexpected discovery of Italian Toadflax growing in my local cemetery.

Recording Ladybirds

Since 2020, I have become increasingly enamored with Britain’s diverse and beautiful ladybirds and for a while now, have been making an effort to record those found across the North East.

A personal challenge, if you will, these pages share my discoveries and observations so far. With a long way to go and many more places to visit, I’ll keep this area updated with ladybird news and discoveries.

Recent posts on ladybirds

Articles and updates on ladybirds and their recording in the North East.

A Quick Guide to Black Ladybirds

A short guide to some of the black ladybirds you could encounter while ladybird spotting across the UK


Of all the branches of natural history, it is botany that interests me the most.

While I am certainly not an expert, despite finding myself in the lucky position of becoming a BSBI County Recorder, here you’ll find observations, articles and musings on plant life in the North East.

From exquisite orchids to urban trees, let’s see what we can discover!

Recent botany blogs

Recording and enjoying plants across Newcastle and Northumberland.

Plant of the week: Italian Toadflax

Entry number four in our Plant of the Week series follows the unexpected discovery of Italian Toadflax growing in my local cemetery.

Mountain Pansies, like this one at Allen Banks, feature regularly on this nature blog

The Basics of Wildlife Recording

A quick look at the basics of biological recording, including the key components of a wildlife record.

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Sharing Your Wildlife Records

So, you’ve created a wildlife record. Now, where do you send it to maximise its value for conservation?

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Comparing Plant ID Apps

Plant identification apps can be confusing, especially at first. However, there are lots out there to help botanists ID their finds.

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Recent North East wildlife highlights

Just a few exciting finds and lucky captures from walks across the region